THE SAGA OF PRINCE ERIK ‘BRAGI’ RAGNARSON Has Been Added to The Site Under the New Heading The VARANGIANS / UKRAINIANS Book Series – The True History of ‘The Great Viking Manifestation of Medieval Europe’© and the below Post Covers CHAPTER TWENTY SEVEN:
BOOK TWO: THE SAGA OF PRINCE ERIK ‘BRAGI’ RAGNARSON
A Novel By Brian Howard Seibert
© Copyright by Brian Howard Seibert
CHAPTER TWENTY SEVEN
27.0 CONFLICT WITH THE KHAZARS (Circa 838 AD)
“Hlod rode from the east, heir of Heidrek,
he came to the court claiming his birthright,
to Arheimar, the homes of the Goths;
there drank Angantyr arval for Heidrek.”
Anonymous; The Saga of King Heidrek the Wise
(838 AD) Erik wintered with his brother in The Vik and in the spring, he set out for a season of Southern Way trade. Fair Faxi led the small merchant armada that left The Vik, crossed the Skagerrak and Kattegat and traversed the Sound between Denmark and Gotland. There, a larger Danish merchant fleet, from both Liere and Hedeby, joined the Norwegians, and they sailed past Bornholm and along the Baltic Sea. A small Swedish flotilla joined them off the Isle of Oland, and a larger group of Swedes from Birka met them at the Island of Gotland. The merchant armada then crossed the Baltic, traversed the Gulf of Riga and entered the mouth of the Dvina River.
On the Baltic Sea, the merchants had been excited and optimistic; on the Dvina they were calm and sullen. All took up their shields–some had taken two–and wielded their weapons: bows, spears and slings, arms for fending off enemies at a distance. Erik saw the ruined city of the Sclavs up on a broad ridge behind the open battlefield where King Frodi had slain King Strunick a decade before. The city lay in ruins. “This is Lithuanian territory once again,” a Norwegian merchant whispered to Erik. “The Sclavs have all fled or died.” Erik could hear the fear in the man’s voice as he breathed the word Lithuanian. He had heard that same fear in the breath of men shouting ‘Biarmians!’ when he had first sailed up the Northern Dvina.
“Storm of darts!” someone shouted suddenly, and the quivering twang of bowstrings drifted out of the brush and across the water, and hundreds of arrows could be seen rising, arcing and then falling, as the Varangians quit their rowing and took shelter under shields. The waters about the ships came alive with the splashing of darts, and the decks of ships and the faces of shields danced with the soft thuds of arrows. Several slaves aboard the ships died and several more were wounded in the attack. As each ship passed the copse of trees by the river, it, too, suffered under the feathered barrage, until all ships had finally gone by and every one had sustained some kind of damage. Further upriver, the leader of the Danish merchants took his ship into shore at a clearing that had been marked by the Lithuanians. A grassy meadow fell serenely into the river at one end and at the other it was marked by a wooden statue of some unknown native god. The Danish merchant pulled his ship right up close to the riverbank, for the water was deep there, and he threw his offerings to the Lithuanian god on shore. All the trailing merchant ships followed the example set by their leader until the shore was piled high with goods, more a tithe than an offering.
“How do you know if you’ve left enough?” Erik asked the leader of the Norwegians.
“Why…they attack us again,” he answered, matter-of-factly.
“I wouldn’t pay the tithe,” Erik said bitterly. “I’d fight them first.”
“I knew that you would be averse to making an offering, so I had the men of my ship put out a double offering to cover you,” the Norwegian merchant confessed.
Erik looked at the man angrily.
“All the Norwegian merchants chipped in for your share,” the man called Thorolfr added. “If one ship doesn’t pay, all ships are attacked.”
Erik’s anger passed. “In Asia Minor, we arduously circumvent Roman lands to avoid paying a tithe.”
“There are many who travel a route further east to avoid the Lithuanians. There is a town there called Novgorod, meaning New Keep.”
Erik nodded. “I have heard of it. Traders there use it as a base for trading with the Khazars.” Erik peered into the heavy brush, his deep blue eyes penetrating the bush for Lithuanians. His dark brow and his coal black hair were now flecked with grey. He held a heavy Turkish composite bow in his hand with a feathered shaft nocked at the ready. Age had accentuated his sharp features, acutely adjusting the angles of his high cheeks, arcing his eyebrows up ominously, setting out his firm jaw. The heavy baggy black trousers he wore had a Turkish look to them, and his bright white silk shirt of the Hraes’ Trading Company was piped at the seams for added strength…Hvit Serk, White Shirt is what he was often called, as were his men. He had his bright red Roman cloak drawn up, so it hung from one shoulder in a bunch. He had one foot up on a ship’s rib and his black Danish boots were the only Norse clothes that he wore. Even his weapons differed from those of the Danes and Norwegians about him. Tyrfingr, of course, still hung at his side, and his round linden shield was hung from the ship’s top strake, but his bow was a Turkish composite hornbow that he had spent many hours mastering. Its heavy draw weight gave it superior range and power and made it a weapon unequalled on the Asian plain, and Erik had tried to train his troops in Gardariki in its use, but old habits die hard. The strange, warlike little dwarf, Durin, who never left Erik’s side, added to the mystery of the man.
“Next year,” Thorolfr began, “I, too, shall lead my merchants through Novgorod. To Kiev, of course,” he concluded, nervously. Thorolfr knew he no longer addressed a countryman. He was talking to a citizen of the world.
All winter, rumours had been circulating in Gardariki and then Khazaria that Erik was a man no longer of this world, that he had been killed investigating the Fortress of Sarkel. He had been expected to return in a month, and, when he failed to do so, Brother Gregory and several Goths set out to learn what had become of him. Questions placed in the proper ears in Khazaria elicited stories of a Varangian ship’s destruction on the Don River earlier that fall, and, once the news travelled to Gardariki that it had been Erik ‘Bragi’ in command of that ship, the news returned to Khazaria. King Hunn was overjoyed at the news of Prince Erik’s demise, but none was happier than his grandson, Prince Hlod, Princess Hanund’s son. The former Queen of Denmark had not forgotten that it was Erik who had exposed her infidelity and his brother Roller who had killed her lover. She had never failed to remind her son just who it was that had deprived him of a kingdom, and Prince Hlod had, early on, made plans to regain his lost position and tarnished prestige.
In the winter, Prince Hlod went about his grandfather’s kingdom garnering supporters to his cause, and in the spring, they set off for Kiev. In the main city of the Varangians, Prince Hlod addressed his father, King Angantyr Frodi, in his high seat hall. “I have come to claim my inheritance,” he began. “I’ll have half of Prince Erik’s lands and treasures, for he deprived me of my rightful place.”
“You’ll have your third when I am dead!” King Frodi answered him angrily, referring to a bastard’s share of an inheritance. “We, too, have heard the rumours of Prince Erik Bragi’s death, but they remain rumours, and if they should become fact, my sister, Princess Gunwar, your aunt, shall inherit the lands and wealth of my Kagan Bek.”
Then General Ygg stepped forward. “There is no proof that he be your son, my liege. He is more likely the result of cuckoldry. He buries your friend before he is dead. Send him away thankful he yet has his head!”
“You’ll have your third when I am dead,” King Frodi repeated himself.
Then Prince Hlod said, “I shall have my share of Erik’s wealth, for there is treasure enough in cattle and steed, in weapons and stead, in bright rings and burnished blades for a nephew and his aunt. Through the Mirkwood Forest shall I wend with warriors plenty, until I get my rightful share.”
Finally, King Frodi said, “Broken bucklers and shattered lances shall be your lot, your share, your inheritance should you take up arms against the Hraes’. If Prince Erik is dead, he shall rise up from the grave to fight for his lands and his love, fair Princess Gunwar. Now leave us! Thankful you’ve yet a head!” shouted the Great Kagan of Kiev.
The tithe the Scandinavian merchants had paid the Lithuanians must have sufficed, for they did not attack again. Soon the river caravan was in the relative safety of the land of the Dregovichi, and all the merchants cheered as they cleared a bend in the river and saw the settlement of Surazh. There, they beached their boats in a clearing, spent a night cleaning themselves and resting in the longhalls King Frodi’s troops had built, then, next day, they loaded their goods upon wagons King Frodi’s craftsmen had prepared, pulled by mules King Frodi’s retainers supplied, and they set off for the settlement of Smolensk, three days travel away. Erik, however, had Fair Faxi mounted upon wheeled axles and towed by a team of mules along the portage route.
At Smolensk, Erik met the kinfolk of Alfgeir, the Danish merchant and friend that Erik had buried years before, and there were toasts and greetings and memories shared in that reunion. Again, the merchants spent a night in longhalls built by King Frodi’s troops. In the morning they purchased monoxylan built by craftsmen of the local Slav populace, the Radimichi, then loaded up their wares and, with fresh ships, the river caravan set off again, this time down the Dnieper.
Erik looked like a ghost from the grave as he stepped out of Fair Faxi and onto the dock at Kiev. The rumours that he had been killed had circulated throughout the city, and, being Kagan Bek of both Gardar and Gardariki, as well as having been popular with both Varangians and the local Slavs, the Poljane, Erik had been mourned by all. King Frodi had gone down sadly to the shores of the Dnieper to welcome the arriving Southern Way merchants only to find the very element of his grief alive and leading them. He was beside himself with joy as he hugged his brother-in-law warmly. King Olmar, too, was overjoyed to see Erik, and a happiness blazed within him too powerful to burn for just a friend, but he submerged it and merely shook Erik’s hand.
On meeting his grandfather again, Erik wanted to cry out in the repatriation, “Grandfather! At long last, my Grandfather!”, but he did not. King Olmar’s coldness towards him was apparent, and the old monarch must have known all along, ever since he had taken Boddi’s cloak pin from Erik and given it back again, that Erik was his blood kin. “What a terrible thing it must be to be a king and not acknowledge your own grandson, for politics or whatever reason,” Erik thought to himself.
High upon the palisade of the centre fort of Kiev, Princess Alfhild watched Erik and a dwarf step onto a quay, and the sight took her back to a bright sunny day when Erik had won himself a ship through his words and had saved the dwarf Dvalin from humiliation. She realized, now, how close she had come to loving Erik, and she cried because she knew that soon it would be time to avenge her father, King Gotar, by withholding her support from him. Gotar had raised her to be the consummate politician, and she would not fail him in her final task.
Erik’s reunion with the people of Kiev, was, of necessity, short-lived. The next morning, he carried on down the Dnieper with the Varangian merchants, who were joined by King Frodi and Slav and Hraes’ contingents bound for Constantinople. This season, however, at the Dnieper Rapids, they came upon thousands and thousands of Magyar horsemen and their families migrating across the Asian plain. With the completion of the Fortress of Sarkel, the Khazars no longer required their services, guarding the Don Heath, so the Finno-Ugric Magyars, or Turkoi, as the Greeks called them, began a westward trek that was to culminate in the founding of the nation of Hungary, named after their native Dzungaria on the north-western border of Cathay. The Hraes’ viewed the invading tribesmen as enemies, and it was only with great difficulty that they managed to get their boats down the Dnieper. At Cherson, Greek and Goth traders joined the merchants, who then split into groups bound for Constantinople and the Caspian Sea. It was at Cherson that King Frodi and Erik, Kagan and Kagan Bek, parted company.
Erik and his group had to stop and wait for Goth merchants, who were surprised by the fact Erik was alive, and had been ready to forgo the season’s trade due to the premature news of his demise.
The citizens of Gardariki were overjoyed to learn the news that Erik was yet alive, Princess Gunwar being so overcome with excitement that she sailed forth to meet him on the Sea of Azov. Old Gotwar was caught by surprise with the news. She had wanted to go with her mistress, but her old age would not let her keep up with the feverish pace with which Gunwar readied herself, and the old woman missed the boat. Erik and Gunwar spent a beautiful night together aboard Fair Faxi, with a half moon and a full sail above them. Gunwar informed Erik that, since they had been apart so long, there was no way she was going to be kept in Gardariki, and that she would be travelling to Baghdad with her husband. Erik agreed on one condition: Gunwar would have to dress as a warrior, since Moslem women were not given the freedom that Norse women had. To this Gunwar gladly agreed. She said, “I’m as fine a warrior as most of the men of Gardariki, and certainly finer than any the Arabs have.”
When Erik and Gunwar returned to Gardariki, old Gotwar was waiting on the quay along with most of the citizens of Tmutorokan. There was a great feast prepared and ready, so the merchants planned on a two-day stopover in which to enjoy the celebration. Gunwar noticed that Gotwar seemed agitated and disturbed as she dispensed her medicines to her mistress. Later that evening, during the feasting, Gunwar fell ill. Gotwar claimed it was food poisoning and was life threatening, but Erik took note that no others had suffered like symptoms. The old priestess of Odin, using all the medical skills she’d acquired through her witchcraft, plied Gunwar with medicines and herbs until her mistress recovered somewhat from the illness. “Her entire system shall require a cleansing that may take several weeks, but you have my assurances that she will be alive and well upon your return from Baghdad,” the old crone told the leader of the Hraes’. For once, Erik felt thankful that he had spared the old woman’s life, and he set off for Baghdad with his merchants, while Gunwar remained in Gardariki to convalesce.
The trade in Baghdad went very well, but Erik was disturbed to learn that his friend, Ahmad Ibn-Yakut had been ill all the previous winter. His son, Fadlan, was taking over the family business for him. Erik again got the sensation that time was shifting. It was as though years, but not time, pass until suddenly some event trips time and it shifts forward to catch up with the years. Erik realized then that time is relative; years are but the continuum. Time had treated Erik relatively well; he was still young, though many in years.
At the end of the summer trading season, when the Varangian merchants attempted to return up the Dnieper, they found the rapid portages effectively blocked by the Magyars. Still under orders from the Khazars, the Magyar tribesmen refused to let any merchants pass. The traders that they managed to capture were stripped of their wealth and allowed to carry on to Kiev. The rest of the Varangians returned to Gardariki.
Erik was again separated from Gunwar, as he led the stranded merchants across the Sea of Azov and up the Don and Donets Rivers, where they portaged across to the Orel River, a tributary of the Dnieper. Erik had them carry a message to King Frodi requesting relief from the Magyar blockade, but he, himself, returned to Gardariki in Fair Faxi, before the Greek triremes stationed out of the Fortress of Sarkel could learn of his movements.
In Khazaria, Prince Hlod once again spent the winter garnering support for his cause from the Onogur, the At-Khazars and Kara-Khazars as well as the Huns. This time, though, he levied troops from the tribes loyal to his grandfather, King Hunn. He then sent messengers to Gardariki and Kiev informing the Hraes’ of his intention of taking Tmutorokan for himself.
Erik, too, sent messengers to Kiev requesting, once more, that King Frodi raise an army to raze the Magyar blockade and send reinforcements to the defence of Gardariki. He regretted having led his Varangian merchants up the Don and sending them back to Kiev. He could have used those stalwart men in the defence of Tmutorokan.
Chapter 28: THE BATTLE OF SARKEL (Circa 839 AD) of BOOK 2: THE SAGA OF PRINCE ERIK ‘BRAGI’ RAGNARSON shall follow on next Post or may be found under Heading of The VARANGIANS / UKRAINIANS Book Series – The True History of ‘The Great Viking Manifestation of The Middle Ages’© in Book Two: The Saga of Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson.
Note: This website is about Vikings and Varangians and the way they lived over a thousand years ago. The content is as explicit as Vikings of that time were and scenes of violence and sexuality are depicted without reservation or apology. Reader discretion is advised.
The VARANGIANS / UKRAINIANS or The Nine Books of Saxo’s Danish History Per Brian Howard Seibert
BOOK ONE: The Saga of King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ Sigurdson
King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ Sigurdson’s third wife, Princess Aslaug, was a young survivor of the Saga of the Volsungs and was a daughter of King Sigurd ‘the Dragon-Slayer’ Fafnirsbane, so this is where Ragnar’s story begins in almost all the ancient tales (except Saxo’s). In our series, we explore this tail end of the Volsungs Saga because King Sigurd appears to be the first ‘Dragon-Slayer’ and King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ would seem to be the second so, it is a good opportunity to postulate the origins of Fire Breathing Dragons and how they were slain. King Ragnar would lose his Zealand Denmark to the Anglish Danes of Jutland, who spoke Anglish, as did the majority of Vikings who attacked England, which spoke both Anglish and Saxon languages, sometimes mistakenly called a common Anglo-Saxon language. The Angles and Saxons of England never really did get along, as shall be demonstrated in the following books. King Ragnar assuaged the loss of Zealand by taking York or Jorvik, the City of the Boar, in Angleland and Stavanger Fjord in Thule from which he established his Nor’Way trade route into Scythia.
BOOK TWO: The Saga of Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson
Book Two of the Nine Book The Varangians / Ukrainians Series places The Saga of Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson from Book Five of The First Nine Books of the Danish History of Saxo Grammaticus (c. 1200 AD) about King Frodi ‘the Peaceful’ into its proper chronological location in history. In 1984, when I first started work on the book, I placed Prince Erik’s birth at circa 800 CE, but it has since been revised to 810 CE to better reflect the timelines of the following books in the series. Saxo had originally placed the saga at the time of Christ’s birth and later experts have placed the story at about 400 CE to correspond with the arrival of the Huns on the European scene but, when Attila was driven back to Asia, the Huns didn’t just disappear, they joined the Khazar Empire, just north of the Caspian Sea, and helped the Khazars control the western end of the famous Silk Road Trade Route. Princes Erik and Roller, both sons of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’, sail off to Zealand to avenge their father’s loss, but Erik falls in love with Princess Gunwar, the sister of the Anglish King Frodi of Jutland and, after his successful Battle Upon the Ice, wherein he destroys the House of Westmar, Erik marries Gunwar and both brothers become King Frodi’s foremost men instead, and the story moves on to the founding of Hraes’ and Gardar Ukraine.
BOOK THREE: The Saga of Prince Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Erikson
Book Three, The Saga of Prince Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Erikson, recreates Arrow Odd’s Saga of circa 1200 AD to illustrate how Arrow Odd was Prince Helgi (Oleg in Slavic) Erikson of Kiev, by showing that their identical deaths from the bite of a snake was more than just coincidence. The book investigates the true death of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ by poisoned blood-snakes in York or Jorvik, the ‘City of the Boar’, and how his curse of ‘calling his young porkers to avenge the old boar’ sets up a death spiral between swine and snake that lasts for generations. The book then illustrates the famous Battle of the Berserks on Samso, where Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ and Hjalmar ‘the Brave’ slay the twelve berserk grandsons of King Frodi on the Danish Island of Samso, setting up a death struggle that takes the Great Pagan Army of the Danes from Denmark to ravage Norway and then England and on to Helluland in Saint Brendan’s Newfoundland. A surprise cycle of vengeance manifests itself in the ‘death by snakebite’ of Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’.
BOOK FOUR: The Saga of Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Erikson
Book Four, The Saga of Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Erikson, reveals how Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Ragnarson was actually Prince Eyfur or Ivar (Igor in Slavic) Erikson of Kiev and then King Harde Knute ‘the First’ of Denmark. By comparing a twenty year lacuna in the reign of Prince Igor in The Hraes’ Primary Chronicle with a coinciding twenty year appearance of a King Harde Knute (Hard Knot) of Denmark in European Chronicles, Prince Igor’s punishment by sprung trees, which reportedly tore him apart, may have rather just left him a boneless and very angry young king. Loyal Danes claimed, “It was a hard knot indeed that sprung those trees,” but his conquered English subjects, not being quite as polite, called him, Ivar ‘the Boneless’. The book expands on the death curse of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ and the calling of ‘his young porkers to avenge the old boar’ when Ivar leaves his first son, King Gorm (Snake) ‘the Old’, to rule in Denmark and his last son, Prince Svein (Swine) ‘the Old’ to rule in Hraes’, further setting up the death spiral between the swine and snake of the ‘Lothbrok’ curse.
BOOK FIVE: The Saga of Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson
Book Five, The Saga of Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson, demonstrates how Prince Sveinald (Sviatoslav in Slavic) ‘the Brave’ of Kiev was really Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson of Kiev, who later moved to Norway and fought to become King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ of Denmark and England. But before being forced out of Russia, the Swine Prince sated his battle lust by crushing the Khazars and then attacking the great great grandfather of Vlad the Impaler in a bloody campaign into the ‘Heart of Darkness’ of Wallachia that seemed to herald the coming of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and included the famed 666 Salute of the Army of the Impalers. The campaign was so mortifying that the fifteen thousand pounds of gold that the Emperor of Constantinople paid him to attack the Army of the Impalers seemed not nearly enough, so Prince Svein attacked the Eastern Roman Empire itself. He came close to defeating the greatest empire in the world, but lost and was forced to leave Hraes’ to his three sons. He returned to the Nor’Way and spent twelve years rebuilding Ragnar’s old trade route there.
BOOK SIX: The Saga of Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson
Book Six, The Saga of Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson, establishes how Grand Prince Valdamar (Vladimir in Slavic) ‘the Great’ of Kiev, expanded the Hraes’ Empire and his own family Hamingja by marrying 700 wives that he pampered in estates in and around Kiev. Unlike his father, Svein, he came to the aid of a Roman Emperor, leading six thousand picked Varangian cataphracts against Anatolian rebels, and was rewarded with the hand of Princess Anna Porphyrogennetos of Constantinople, a true Roman Princess born of the purple who could trace her bloodline back to Julius and Augustus Caesar. She was called ‘Czarina’, and after her, all Hraes’ Grand Princes were called ‘Czars’ and their offspring were earnestly sought after, matrimonially, by European royalty.
BOOK SEVEN: The Saga of King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ Ivarson
In The Saga of King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ Ivarson, Prince Svein anonymously takes the name of Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ in Norway and befriends the Jarls of Lade in Trondheim Fjord in Norway as he expands the Nor’Way trade route of his grandfather, Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’. He had come close to defeating the Eastern Roman Empire, and still felt that he was due at least a shared throne in Constantinople. He used the gold from the Nor’Way trade to rebuild his legions and his Hraes’ cataphracts and though his brother, King Gorm ‘the Old’, was dead, his son, Sweyn’s nephew, King Harald ‘Bluetooth’ Gormson had usurped the throne of Denmark and had hired the famed Jomsvikings to attack Prince Sweyn in Norway, setting up the famous Battle of Hjorungavagr in a fjord south of Lade. King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ would emerge from that confrontation and then he would defeat King Olaf Tryggvason of Norway in the Battle of Svolder in 1000 AD, in an engagement precipitated over the hand of Queen Sigrid ‘the Haughty’ of Sweden. Later he attacked England in revenge for the following St. Brice’s Day Massacre of Danes in 1002 AD and he fought a protracted war with the Saxon King Aethelred ‘the Unready’ that could only be described as the harvesting of the English for sale as slaves in Baghdad and Constantinople. With the help of his son, Prince Valdamar of Kiev, and the legions and cataphracts of Hraes’, he conquered England on Christmas Day of 1013, but victory was not kind to him.
BOOK EIGHT: The Saga of King Canute ‘the Great’ Sweynson
Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson of Kiev, who had supported his father, King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ of Denmark in attacks upon England left his ‘Czar’ sons in charge of Hraes’ and took over as King Valdamar of England, but the Latin Christian English revolted against his eastern name and Orthodox Christian religion and brought King Aethelred back from exile in Normandy and Valdamar had to return to Hraes’ and gather up the legions he had already sent back after his father’s victory. His half brother was ruling in Denmark and his sons were ruling in Hraes’ so, in 1015 AD Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ of Kiev was written out of Hraes’ history and in 1016 the Latin Christian Prince Canute ‘the Great’ returned to England to reclaim his throne. He defeated Aethelred’s son, King Edmund ‘Ironside’ of England, at the Battle of Assandun to become King Canute ‘the Great’ of England and later King Knute ‘the Great’ of Denmark and Norway as well. But that is just the start of his story and later Danish Christian Kings would call his saga, and the sagas of his forefathers, The Lying Sagas of Denmark, and would set out to destroy them, claiming that, “true Christians will never read these Sagas”.
BOOK NINE: The Saga of King William ‘the Conqueror’ Robertson
The Third Danish Conquest of Angleland was seen to herald the end of the Great Viking Manifestation of the Middle Ages, but this, of course, was contested by the Vikings who were still in control of it all. Danish Varangians still ruled in Kiev and Danes still ruled the Northern Empire of Canute ‘the Great’, for the Normans were but Danish Vikings that had taken up the French language, and even Greenland and the Newfoundland were under Danish control in a Hraes’ Empire that ran from the Silk Road of Cathay in the east to the Mayan Road of Yucatan in the west. “We are all the children of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’,” Queen Emma of Normandy often said. Out of sheer spite the Saxons of England took over the Varangian Guard of Constantinople and would continue their fight against the Normans in Southern Italy as mercenaries of the Byzantine Roman Empire. They would lose there as well, when in the Fourth Crusade of 1204, the Norman Danes would sack the City of Constantinople and hold it long enough to stop the Mongol hoards that would crush the City of Kiev. It would be Emperor Baldwin ‘the First’ of Flanders and Constantinople who would defeat the Mongol Mongke Khan in Thrace. But the Mongols would hold Hraes’ for three hundred years and this heralded the end of the Great Viking Manifestation. The Silk Road was dead awaiting Marco Polo for its revival. But the western Mayan Road would continue to operate for another hundred years until another unforeseen disaster struck. Its repercussions would be witnessed by the Spanish conquerors who followed Christopher Columbus a hundred and fifty years later in the Valley of the Mound Builders.
By recreating the lives of four generations of Hraes’ Ukrainian Princes and exhibiting how each generation, in succession, later ascended to their inherited thrones in Denmark, the author proves the parallels of the dual rules of Hraes’ Ukrainian Princes and Danish Kings to be cumulatively more than just coincidence. And the author proves that the Danish Kings Harde Knute I, Gorm ‘the Old’ and Harald ‘Bluetooth’ Gormson/Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ were not Stranger Kings, but were Danes of the Old Jelling Skioldung Fridlief/Frodi line of kings who only began their princely careers in Hraes’ and returned to their kingly duties in Denmark with a lot of Byzantine Roman ideas and heavy cavalry and cataphracts.